Friday, September 17, 2010

Vietnam POW CDR Paul Galanti's view of changes at USNA

Our old “Jack of all trades master of none” USNA B.S. degree was the best “major” in existence then (1966). When USNA decided to do the “Major” thing and join the academic standards rules of the majority of colleges and universities, the experience went downhill in my opinion.

Why? Our degree was 160 semester hours almost equally divided between Hard Sciences and Humanities. We all had classes on Saturdays and the curriculum was identical. We were engineers who could write. The degree was good for grad school in nearly any discipline. We all took two years of a language which, more than anything else, improved our English.

I am, frankly, appalled by the inability of many midshipmen and USNA graduate officers to express themselves beyond a vocabulary of only a few hundred words. In informal conversations with mids when I visit the yard, many seemed barely literate.

His advice for JOs and Midshipmen:

Press on. Don’t let the bastards grind you down. Keep your chin up and always do the absolute best you can on any assigned task – and seek out every opportunity you can find to excel. Hey, it’ll work. I promise.

Read his story at the USNI Proceedings BLOG.

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